Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair

Written by Jake Tucker

February 10, 2016 | 15:13

Tags: #action #aliens #robots #third-person-shooter

Companies: #sandlot

Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair Earth Defence Force 4.1 review

I want to talk about the four classes, because each feels totally unique to use

Playing as the Ranger lets you play as a standard grunt - one of the EDF's special forces troopers with versatile weapons and skills. It plays like a standard third-person shooter, although without too much flash.

The Wing Diver gives you a jet pack and a diffewrent set of weapons. You're a glass dagger, capable of immense damage and rapid assaults but with weak Armour and a propensity for getting stuck in gigantic spider webs.

The Air-Raider is your classic support class, calling in off-map artillery and reinforcements. This has the effect of making the games chaotic battles even more exciting, as explosions and vehicles thud down to earth from above.

Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair Earth Defence Force 4.1 review

Finally, there's the Fencer. The game tells you the fencer isn't a class for the novice player. The game is wrong. The Fencer gives you a gigantic gun in each hand, from comedic over-sized missile launchers, to automatic shotguns and even mortars that can level a whole city.

I quickly fell in love with the Fencer, but found myself playing at an entirely different tempo to my three co-op partners who had taken Wing Diver's into battle. Largely, I found they were babysitting me while I laid waste to small armies on the ground. When the action moved to the air, I largely hid among the buildings and let my more nimble colleagues deal with it.

This class-based cooperative mode was the core of the games appeal to me and I quickly found myself drawn in - it's not a AAA title but neither is it trying to be, but I came back repeatedly for 30-minute sessions, finishing up a couple of levels here and there.

Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair Earth Defence Force 4.1 review

There's a loot system that encourages replaying levels with Armour, health packs and weapons dropping to the floor from enemies. The Armour and weapons are persistent, with Armour giving you more health and functioning as a sort of EXP ticker and the weapons dropping in differing levels of quality and type.

These weapons differ, from the humble M16 - albeit with 240 rounds to a magazine - all the way to a tank cannon clutched in your power armour's metal grip there's plenty of variety and learning the tactics for each different weapon is part of the fun.

I'm not sure if it's worth the steep price of entry if you don't have friends ready to hop into the cooperative mode with you, but if you've got friends and this sounds like you're sort of thing, it's hard to beat it.

Honestly, it's not a game you're going to lose your life to, and it's absolutely bonkers, but it has the benefit of embracing that silliness with it's tongue firmly in cheek. With 4 player co-op and a mass of short, replayable missions for you to chop and change between, it's the gaming equivalent of a junk food buffet. I love junk food.

Earth Defense Force 4.1: The Shadow of New Despair Earth Defence Force 4.1 review
Discuss this in the forums
Corsair HS60 Haptic Headset Review

October 15 2020 | 14:00

TOP STORIES

SUGGESTED FOR YOU